Sophomores pursue off-campus housing

first_imgWhile senior year may seem far in the future for the class of 2014, many sophomores looking to rent an ideal off-campus house begin their search as early as this semester. Off-campus concerns chair Emily LeStrange said interested students should do adequate research on a property before signing a lease. “The best piece of advice I can give is to encourage new renters to talk to people they know currently rent[ing] from a certain landlord or housing agency,” LeStrange said. “They can give you honest feedback about their experiences and can point you in the right direction.” LeStrange said students often feel pressure from landlords or housing agencies to sign a lease before they have time to fully comprehend its stipulations. “You should take the time to review the agreement and ask any questions if they arise,” LeStrange said. “There will always be housing off campus, so don’t feel rushed to make an agreement.” Students should fully comprehend any financial terms of the lease, LeStrange said. She advised prospective renters to especially understand what utilities are included in the rent and how rent payment would be scheduled. “Even some minor things may be in the lease, like a policy on pets,” LeStrange said. “It’s important to really understand the agreement. Most students forget that a lease is a binding legal document, and I think it is very important to always keep that in mind.” Off-campus president Tess Fitzpatrick said safety is another key factor in choosing a house. “Some apartments and housing areas are known for robberies, and students need to know the safety aspect involved in moving off campus,” Fitzpatrick said. LeStrange suggested students read crime reports for the area if they are unsure of the neighborhood’s history. The off-campus student website,, includes complete crime reports filed by students in the surrounding area. “It’s important to be an informed renter,” LeStrange said. “Sometimes this means you need to gather your own information about the neighborhood you are going to live in.” LeStrange said student government would host a lease fair in the LaFortune Ballroom at the beginning of November. “We invite landlords and housing agencies to campus so that students can meet the people who have properties for rent,” LeStrange said. “Importantly though, we want them to be informed renters — they should see what is available.” Fitzpatrick said the lease fair gives students an opportunity to thoroughly examine the pros and cons of each option. “I think it will be really constructive, especially if you’re looking to get a house since you really need to start that sophomore year,” Fitzpatrick said. “You can see what’s out there, the price range and what’s convenient location-wise.” LeStrange said the student government office also has “Good Neighbor Guides” that provide general information on both renting houses and living off campus. “Specifically, the ‘Living Off Campus’ section highlights things like landlord-renter relations, renter’s insurance, social gathering information, budgeting and utilities, etc.,” LeStrange said. Despite the challenges, Fitzpatrick said off-campus living is an invaluable experience in college. “There is a lot of freedom with moving off campus,” Fitzpatrick said. “There is more responsibility, but I think it’s great for students at this age to be able to live off campus.”last_img read more

Saint Mary’s hosts card design competition

first_imgFor the past five years, the Saint Mary’s Mother Pauline Society (MPS) has been hosting a student design competition for cards sent to society members as expressions of gratitude and well-wishes. While the message sent in each card is itself meaningful, the student-designed card makes it all the more special.“We want to showcase student-focused and created art for donors in the Mother Pauline Society,” Saint Mary’s director of gift planning, Valerie Sherman said. The Mother Pauline Society, named for Saint Mary’s College’s first president, is a donor society for alumna and other donors who wish to leave planned gifts to Saint Mary’s. They have several events for members, such as a special breakfast at Saint Mary’s reunions. The College works closely with them to provide support to current students. Donors have expressed that they enjoy the cards and learning about the winning students, Sherman said. “We include the picture and a small bio of the winning artist,” she said. “It includes their major and some information about them. Oftentimes, students have more than one major or a few minors, and that tends to make donors happy. We have a close-knit community of Saint Mary’s alumni and donors who like to check up on current students. It makes things more personal and encourages alumni to share their own stories.” Members of the Mother Pauline Society are also closely involved in the lives of future students, Sherman said. “A lot of donors want to set up new scholarships” Sherman said. “In many cases they were only able to attend Saint Mary’s because of their own scholarships. They want to help current and future students in the same way they were helped.” The MPS has been looking to expand the design competition in coming years. Currently, the award for first prize is $75 in gift card money, but Sherman said that may change in the future. “We want to start accepting multiple submissions as winners,” she said. “We’ll be able to give more awards and have various designs available for the next couple years.” Along with the competition, Sherman said she wants to expand the number of cards given to MPS members. “We took our example from other nonprofits,” Sherman said. “We want to send out ‘get well‘ cards or holiday cards. Currently, most of our cards go to members for their birthday or as a part of the newsletter.” The competition this year is open until March 31. The winning cards will be ordered and produced for the next year’s mailing.Last year’s winner, junior Dalanie Beach, a creative writing and studio art major, will have her design printed on the 2019 cards and shared with over 400 members of the Mother Pauline Society.With such a large audience, freshman Hannah Toepp said she is excited for a chance to design a card for donors. “I think it would be really cool to have my artwork given to a wider audience,” Toepp said. “ … Saint Mary’s is just so beautiful and there’s a lot of inspiration to be found here. We have a rich history and a lot of opportunities to explore it.”Tags: Art, design, Design Competition, Mother Pauline Society, Student Artlast_img read more

My Big Gay Italian Wedding & Funeral Extend Again

first_img Show Closed This production ended its run on Aug. 22, 2015 Related Shows My Big Gay Italian Wedding and My Big Gay Italian Funeral have extended their run again! Both plays, which had previously announced an extension through June 28, will now run through September 27. The shows play in rep at St Luke’s Theatre under the direction of Sonia Blangiardo. In addition to Wilkinson, the current cast of Wedding and Funeral also includes Hugh Hysell, Donna Castellano, Marissa Rosen, Debra Toscano, Liz Gerecitano and Meagan Robar. My Big Gay Italian Wedding Starring and written by Anthony Wilkinson, My Big Gay Italian Wedding and My Big Gay Italian Funeral are both loosely based on his own wacky Italian family. Wedding tells the story of Anthony Pinnunziato (Wilkinson), a gay Italian-American who wants to marry his boyfriend Andrew in a traditional wedding ceremony. Funeral tells the story of Anthony and his large family mourning the death of his father. View Commentslast_img read more

VMEC announces fall workshop schedule

first_imgRANDOLPH CENTER, VT — July 25, 2005 — The Vermont Manufacturing Extension Center (VMEC) Fall Public Workshop Schedule is now available online and registration is open at the VMEC web site ( is external)).Some of the workshops Vermont manufacturers can attend this season are Principles of Lean Manufacturing 101, The 5S Visual System, and Office Value Stream Mapping. The workshops will be presented in various locations throughout the state. The workshops schedule is constantly being updated to meet the needs of Vermont manufacturers, so visit the web site for the most up-to-date information.Through a working partnership with the Vermont Training Program of the Department of Economic Development, VMEC is pleased to offer a $125 per person discount to Vermont manufacturers.VMEC is a not-for-profit organization that has been providing consulting and training to Vermont manufacturers since 1996. For more information about VMEC, visit is external) or call (802) 728-1432.###About VMECVMEC’s Mission is “To Improve Manufacturing in Vermont and strengthen the global competitiveness of the state’s smaller manufacturers.” This is done through professional consulting, one-on-one coaching and public/onsite workshops to help Vermont’s approximately 2,000 small and medium sized manufacturers increase their productivity, modernize their manufacturing and business processes, adopt advanced technologies, reduce costs, and improve their competitiveness. Increased competitiveness means greater stability in the state’s work force, improved efficiencies. Visit is external) for more information.last_img read more

Welch calls for extension of first-time homebuyer tax credit

first_imgAt the Essex home of Lindsey and Matt Wignall, Rep. Peter Welch on Tuesday called for a year-long extension of a tax credit that allowed the Wignalls and hundreds of thousands of other middle class families to buy their first home. Welch outlined his support for the First-time Homebuyer Credit Extension Act (H.R. 1993), which would extend a popular and successful program that provides an $8,000 tax credit to families buying their first home. The program has been credited with stabilizing the housing market, creating construction jobs and helping countless families achieve homeownership.Welch called for the extension alongside the Wignall family and Dustin Partlow and Sierra Ouellette – a Burlington couple hoping to take advantage of the credit before it expires November 30. Like families across the country, Partlow and Ouellette are worried they will be unable to afford a new home without the credit.“In this time of economic uncertainty, the First-time Homebuyer Tax Credit has given countless Vermont families support to achieve the dream of homeownership. This tremendously successful program has provided middle class families a much-needed boost while creating construction jobs and boosting the broader economy,” Welch said. “Extending it will ease the uncertainty facing families in the midst of buying a home, and it will help ward off an untimely slump in the housing market.”The First-time Homebuyer Tax Credit – created in July 2008 with the passage of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act – originally capped the credit at $7,500 and required it to be paid back in 15 years. With the passage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in February 2009, the credit was increased to $8,000 and the repayment requirement was waived.H.R. 1993 would extend the credit from November 30, 2009 through December 30, 2010. The bill would also retroactively waive the repayment requirement for those who took advantage of the credit in 2008.According to the Internal Revenue Service, 1.4 million Americans have made use of the credit. Mark Zandy, chief economist for Moody’s, said roughly 375,000 of those home purchases would not have taken place without the tax credit.At Tuesday’s event in Essex, a homebuilder, a real estate professional and a banking official discussed the effect the credit has had on creating jobs, restoring the housing market and stimulating the economy. Chris Snyder, executive vice president of Snyder Homes, Leslee McKenzie, president and owner of Hickock and Boardman Real Estate, and Chris D’Elia, President of the Vermont Bankers Association, all spoke in support of extending the tax credit. Source: Welch’s office. 10.6.2009# # #last_img read more

Government Data: Americans Love Outdoor Recreation

first_imgToday, for the first time ever, outdoor recreation’s contributions are being counted as a unique part of United States gross domestic product (GDP). The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) released a preliminary look at United States GDP outputs from outdoor recreation. The analysis shows that growth in the outdoor industry continues to outpace growth of the economy as a whole and accounts for over 2 percent of the entire United States GDP.The BEA prototype estimate finds that outdoor recreation contributed over $673 billion toward total U.S. gross output, which is the total value of domestic goods and services produced by an industry. This supports the $887 billion that consumers spend annually on outdoor recreation and confirms the national importance of investments in recreation funding and infrastructure. Importantly, this prototype estimate paints a clear picture that recreation is an important sector of the U.S. economy and that Americans’ desire to recreate outside is growing.“While this is just the prototype estimate, and there will likely be changes here and there, we are extremely excited that outdoor recreation is now counted as an official U.S. industry and a major contributor to the U.S. economy — this further validates our broad and growing economic impact,” said Amy Roberts, executive director of Outdoor Industry Association. “We look forward to working with the Bureau of Economic Analysis over the next several months to include key criteria that will capture all the various ways outdoor recreation is an economic generator — whether one recreates close to home or travels across the country.”For more information, read this FAQ.last_img read more

Latin America Prioritizes Aid to Rebuild Haiti

first_imgBy Dialogo April 03, 2012 The 2010 earthquake in Haiti left around 250,000 dead and caused serious damage to productive infrastructure, while 1.5 million people are still living in camps. “It’s not an issue of resources; of course, resources are necessary, but Haiti could perhaps be an example of the difficulties of coordinating emergency programs,” the official indicated at a press conference at the conclusion of the 32nd FAO Conference for Latin America and the Caribbean. The FAO director said that the Latin American countries will focus their activities on coordinating existing programs, together with the Caribbean nation’s Government, more than on dedicating financial resources. “The countries decided that Haiti is not only an emergency problem; it’s a national reconstruction problem, one of rebuilding its productive capacity in order to implement a medium-term and long-term program that can ensure peace in that region,” Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Director-General José Graziano da Silva, a Brazilian, said at a press conference. The next regional meeting will be held in Chile in 2014. “Each one goes there with his little flag and wants to do his own thing, and the result is that the contributions don’t make a difference,” Graziano da Silva vividly explained at the conclusion of the five-day meeting focused on food security. The official reiterated that Latin American and Caribbean Governments reaffirmed at the Buenos Aires meeting their commitment to eradicate hunger before 2025, and he indicated that the region is the first to set that objective for itself. center_img The meeting in the Argentine capital was attended by 18 ministers and 37 deputy ministers from 32 countries in the region, among a total of 299 participants. In this regard, he said that increasing food production and supply “is vital in order to eradicate hunger.” Graziano da Silva had noted during the conference “the need to increase food production at the global level by 70 percent, in order to feed a population that will reach 9 billion people in 2050.” High-ranking officials from 32 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, gathered at an FAO regional conference in Buenos Aires, to prioritize aid for rebuilding the devastations in Haiti that were caused by a killer earthquake in 2010, the head of that United Nations organization said. In Buenos Aires, Argentina assumed the role of FAO regional conference chair for the next two years. The FAO carried out projects worth almost 40 million dollars in Haiti in 2010-2011, especially in reforestation plans and in order to optimize resources coming from the European Union. last_img read more

Labour isn’t working out how the land market works

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Coming clean

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Making guarantees to young pension participants ‘unaffordable’ – DNB

first_imgDuring the interview, Knot suggested that offering fewer guarantees could “create space” for pension funds to increase investment risk.“If they promised less certainty, pension funds could increase their investment risk and be more likely to deliver better returns,” he said.He said pension funds should be given “leeway” for just such an investment policy, adding that a guarantee should be given only to older participants “who need to know what they can expect at retirement age”.The regulator’s recognition of the problems facing the Dutch pension system echoed similar statements made recently by Gerard Riemen, head of the Dutch Pensions Federation.Last week, Riemen advocated a new collective defined contribution (CDC) system and argued that an “indication” about a future pension level should replace the current defined benefit promise of a “certain” pension.“We should tell a 55 year old how much his currently accrued pensions assets are likely to deliver in future benefits,” he said.“However, the honest answer to a 35 year old should be that we can’t properly estimate the future pension yet.” Klaas Knot, president at the Dutch financial regulator (DNB), has conceded that the country’s pensions funds can no longer guarantee younger participants their future pensions.Speaking on the ‘Buitenhof’ TV programme over the weekend, Knot concluded that guarantees should be limited to older participants.“Offering guarantees to a participant who has just started paying contributions is over the top,” he said.“Due to the huge cost of providing certainty, [in light of] low interest rates and an ageing population, we simply can no longer afford this.”last_img read more